6 January 2017

For a lot of people who exercise music is an essential part of a workout. It distracts them from pain and fatigue, elevates mood, increases endurance, reduces perceived effort and may even promote metabolic efficiency. In 2012, Costas Karageorghis of Brunel Univeristy in London, one of the world’s leading experts on the psychology of exercise music, wrote that one could think of music as “a type of legal performance-enhancing drug.” 

According to a survey conducted in 2012, the most popular type of exercise music was hip-hop. In 2016, we’ve seen health and fitness become a full-blown trend in hip-hop culture. Being beneficial physically, rappers like Rick Ross, N.O.R.E. and Fat Joe decided to maintain workout regimens. Styles P and Jadakiss have even invested into the juice bar business. Big moves!

To motivate you to crush your workout goals for the new year, Sports Illustrated Philippines compiled a list of rap songs that you need in the gym. Enjoy! 

El Chapo – The Game & Skrillex

The last track of The Game’s latest album, The Documentary 2.5, features EDM artist Skrillex. The song is a reference to drug kingpin, El Chapo, who was considered one of the most powerful people in the world, and has again been on the run since escaping from prison in July. 

The song features a heavy bass, The Game rapping in Spanish, and all the other things needed to make you feel like a god in the gym. 

Still Ballin’ – Tupac ft. Trick Daddy

“Still Ballin” was the second single from Tupac’s posthumous album, Better Dayz. It features Trick Daddy and is part two of “Str8 Ballin” from the album Thug Life Vol 1

Anything from the greatest rapper of all time is sure to be a banger – Tupac still ballin!

Touch The Sky – Kanye West 

“Touch the Sky” was one of the international hit singles from arguably Kanye’s best album, Late Registration. The song talks about how life was before Kanye became anything close to Yeezus and the unbelievable feeling of moving up onto the pinnacle of the music industry. Must be heaven! 

Panda – Desiigner 

If you had a hard time understanding this song, you have company with you in the dark.  Basically, it’s the then 18-year-old Desiigner talking about lusting over cars (The white BMW X6 he says, looks like a panda) and broads… In Atlanta. This song is what Rolling Stone describes as a “momentary sugar rush”, the kind of beat that makes a crowd lean and dab into at the club. Who doesn’t need a sugar rush from time to time, especially between gruelling sets?  

Where the Hood At – DMX 

We can’t compile a playlist without the hype-master, DMX. “Where the Hood At” is the lead single for DMX’s fifth studio album, Grand Champ. Initially noted to be a diss track for Ja Rule, the song regained popularity last year when Democratic Presidential candidate, Bernie Sanders allegedly walked out to a rally in Lancaster, California to the explosive track and earned major street cred. Whether or not it helped the senator with the polls, this song will most definitely make you FeeltheBern. 

Forever – Drake, Kanye West, Lil Wayne, Eminem

Ahhh, 2009 -- The year the 21st century rap titans came together for the super-single, “Forever.” In 2009, we remember Drake debuting his Grammy nominated mixtape “So Far Gone”. He lived up to the hype and collaborated with superstars Kanye West, Lil Wayne, and Eminem for what Jay-Z called, “the best posse cut of the year.” If not already packed with superstardom, Forever was also featured in Lebron James’ documentary called More than a Game. This song was the product of great team effort, and everyone came out an MVP.

Roy Jones – Can’t Be Touched ft. Mr. Magic & Trouble 

"Can’t Be Touched" was one of the two singles of Body Head Bangerz: Volume One by the southern hip-hop group, Body Head Bangerz. Released in 2004, the music video on Youtube has garnered 100 million views! 

Back That Thang Up – Juvenile ft. Mannie Fresh and Lil Wayne 

Ladies, this one’s for you. The, yes, THE song that popularized every-girl-in-the-club’s favorite dance move “after you back it up and stop / then drop, drop, drop, drop it like it’s hot”, will have you feeling real good about those deadlifts. For the big timers, you better go and get it girl. 

Remember the Name – Fort Minor 

Who can ever forget this song?! Released in 2005, the song has been extensively used by stadiums, arenas, sports teams and even video games. 

Bring Em Out – T.I. ft. Jay-Z 

The glorious moment when a team comes out of the tunnel to face the cheering crowd is made even more epic by an anthem. "Bring Em Out" was the theme song for the Miami Heat during player introductions at the 2006 NBA Finals. Other notable teams to have used this Swizz Beatz produced game day classic would be the Oklahoma City Thunder, the Saskatchewan Roughriders, and just the New York Mets. 


Listen to the playlist on Spotify.